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  21. <title>Social Contracts for Agile Teams</title>
  22. <link>http://www.ethann.com/social-contracts-for-agile-teams/</link>
  23. <comments>http://www.ethann.com/social-contracts-for-agile-teams/#respond</comments>
  24. <pubDate>Tue, 27 Feb 2018 03:42:53 +0000</pubDate>
  25. <dc:creator><![CDATA[Ethann Castell]]></dc:creator>
  26. <category><![CDATA[Agile]]></category>
  27. <category><![CDATA[scrum]]></category>
  28.  
  29. <guid isPermaLink="false">http://www.ethann.com/?p=760</guid>
  30. <description><![CDATA[<p>Team member cohesion is an important factor in building a high-performing team, however achieving this cohesion is often easier said than done. Social Contracts are a tool I’ve used to build cohesion quickly and effectively within teams. If you have never heard of Social Contracts, don’t worry, you are not alone. Many people have not heard of them. In this post I’m going to share with you a complete guide to Social Contracts covering the how, what and why of building a Social Contract. After reading this post you should be well prepared to go and build Social Contracts with your own teams. What is a Social Contract? A Social Contract is a set of agreements that a team makes within itself to describe how the team members will behave and work together. Social Contracts are sometimes called Working Agreements. Ideally it will balance aspirational goals of the team with the details of actual behaviours and attitudes that the team want to see in action. The Social Contract should be unique to each team and changed as required. It is a set of agreements, not a straight-jacket, and as new team members come on board it may need to change. There are several key attributes of a Social Contract: Outside of an Organisation’s agreed policies and procedures, but cannot override them. Created and changed by mutual agreement of the team members. Exists for the life of the team. Enforced by mutual agreement of the team members Why have a Social Contract? Agile Teams should be..</p>
  31. <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="http://www.ethann.com/social-contracts-for-agile-teams/">Social Contracts for Agile Teams</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="http://www.ethann.com">Ethann Castell</a>.</p>
  32. ]]></description>
  33. <content:encoded><![CDATA[<p>Team member cohesion is an important factor in building a high-performing team, however achieving this cohesion is often easier said than done. Social Contracts are a tool I’ve used to build cohesion quickly and effectively within teams. If you have never heard of Social Contracts, don’t worry, you are not alone. Many people have not heard of them. In this post I’m going to share with you a complete guide to Social Contracts covering the how, what and why of building a Social Contract. After reading this post you should be well prepared to go and build Social Contracts with your own teams.</p>
  34. <p><span id="more-760"></span></p>
  35. <h1>What is a Social Contract?</h1>
  36. <p>A Social Contract is a set of agreements that a team makes <strong>within itself</strong> to describe how the team members will behave and work together. Social Contracts are sometimes called Working Agreements. Ideally it will balance aspirational goals of the team with the details of actual behaviours and attitudes that the team want to see in action.</p>
  37. <p>The Social Contract should be unique to each team and changed as required. It is a set of agreements, not a straight-jacket, and as new team members come on board it may need to change.</p>
  38. <p>There are several key attributes of a Social Contract:</p>
  39. <ul>
  40. <li>Outside of an Organisation’s agreed policies and procedures, but cannot override them.</li>
  41. <li>Created and changed by mutual agreement of the team members.</li>
  42. <li>Exists for the life of the team.</li>
  43. <li>Enforced by mutual agreement of the team members</li>
  44. </ul>
  45. <h1>Why have a Social Contract?</h1>
  46. <p>Agile Teams should be as self-organising as possible and therefore it is ideal for an Agile team to define their own standards and have a sense of ownership and commitment to them. This helps the team to build a unique character and creates a shared sense of identity.</p>
  47. <p>A Social Contract can also be an important way of reminding team members that the way of working has shifted from a system of control, to a system of trust. People invariably forget their agreements over time. Anyone can ‘enforce’ the Social Contract by pointing out deviations. This in turn contributes to a safe working environment which enables team members to have conversations about behaviours considered inappropriate</p>
  48. <div class="slate-resizable-image-embed slate-image-embed__resize-full-width" data-imgsrc="https://media-exp2.licdn.com/mpr/mpr/AAMABADGAAgAAQAAAAAAABB1AAAAJGU5OWNjNTFhLWI1OTgtNDM2YS04NDAxLTEzNmIzMmE4NWY2MQ.png"><img class="aligncenter" src="https://i1.wp.com/media.licdn.com/mpr/mpr/AAMABADGAAgAAQAAAAAAABB1AAAAJGU5OWNjNTFhLWI1OTgtNDM2YS04NDAxLTEzNmIzMmE4NWY2MQ.png?resize=491%2C379&#038;ssl=1" width="491" height="379" data-li-src="https://i1.wp.com/media.licdn.com/mpr/mpr/AAMABADGAAgAAQAAAAAAABB1AAAAJGU5OWNjNTFhLWI1OTgtNDM2YS04NDAxLTEzNmIzMmE4NWY2MQ.png?resize=491%2C379&#038;ssl=1" data-recalc-dims="1" /></div>
  49. <h1>Forming the Social Contract</h1>
  50. <h2>Who</h2>
  51. <p>It is essential that the whole team should form the contract. You should ensure that all team members participate in forming the contract, as members who are absent may feel little ownership of the contract, which can in turn dilute the power of the contract.</p>
  52. <p>Management typically has little input into forming the contract. They may find value from gaining awareness of the team’s commitment and accountability from the finished contract.</p>
  53. <h2>Where</h2>
  54. <p>Ideally the contract should be formed in a comfortable private room, away from the normal working environment and distractions.</p>
  55. <h2>When</h2>
  56. <p>Try to also avoid times where people might find it difficult to concentrate (for example close to the end of a Sprint, Friday afternoon or Monday morning). Mid-morning is often a good time for software development teams as the team are normally sufficiently caffeinated by this time.</p>
  57. <h2>How</h2>
  58. <p>The following are the steps I recommend to create a Social Contract with your team.</p>
  59. <p>1) Hold a workshop with the whole team. Consider starting with a quick Agile game to get everyone into a relaxed, energized and positive state of mind. (See <a href="http://www.ethann.com/book/awesome-agile-ceremonies/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow noopener">Awesome Agile Ceremonies</a> or <a href="http://tastycupcakes.org/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow noopener">Tasty Cup Cakes</a> for game ideas).</p>
  60. <p>2) Run through the What and Why of Social Contracts to ensure that everyone is starting on the same page.</p>
  61. <p>3) Review some examples of the Social Contracts from other teams (see later in this post).</p>
  62. <p>4) Give the team members a minute or two to think about what they want to get out of having a Social Contract. Target the individuals’ self-interest. This should get them involved in the discussion rather than feeling forced into the process.</p>
  63. <p>5) Brainstorm the contents of the Social Contract. In my experience this can sometimes be a slow process. You can speed it up by:</p>
  64. <p>a.     Having plenty of samples available for the team to re-use in their own contract.</p>
  65. <p>b.     Break the contract into sections, and work on one section at a time.</p>
  66. <p>6) Once all the agreements have been recorded, print out the contract on an A3 sheet of paper and have all team members sign it.</p>
  67. <p>It is important to note that nothing should go into the Social Contract unless it has complete agreement from <strong>all</strong> team members.</p>
  68. <div class="slate-resizable-image-embed slate-image-embed__resize-full-width" data-imgsrc="https://media-exp2.licdn.com/mpr/mpr/AAMABADGAAgAAQAAAAAAAA_6AAAAJDZhNzZhYTZiLTM5NWQtNDFmMC1iNjE5LTJhYzRlY2IzYjE5Yw.jpg"><img class="aligncenter" src="https://i1.wp.com/media.licdn.com/mpr/mpr/AAMABADGAAgAAQAAAAAAAA_6AAAAJDZhNzZhYTZiLTM5NWQtNDFmMC1iNjE5LTJhYzRlY2IzYjE5Yw.jpg?resize=416%2C312&#038;ssl=1" width="416" height="312" data-li-src="https://i1.wp.com/media.licdn.com/mpr/mpr/AAMABADGAAgAAQAAAAAAAA_6AAAAJDZhNzZhYTZiLTM5NWQtNDFmMC1iNjE5LTJhYzRlY2IzYjE5Yw.jpg?resize=416%2C312&#038;ssl=1" data-recalc-dims="1" /></div>
  69. <h2>Where to put it</h2>
  70. <p>Ideally, put the Social Contract on the wall in the team/project area so everyone can see it and it can serve as a reminder to the team.</p>
  71. <h1>Examples from Social Contracts</h1>
  72. <p>The following is a collection of agreements and statements sourced from a number of Social Contracts on the internet, grouped together into categories. These are presented so that you can cherry-pick the individual agreements that are right for your team.</p>
  73. <h2>Meetings</h2>
  74. <ul>
  75. <li>Stand-ups at 9:00am.</li>
  76. <li>No meetings between 12 and 2pm.</li>
  77. <li>Be present for a core set of hours: 10am to 4pm</li>
  78. <li>No regular scheduled meeting in the last 2 days of a sprint/iteration.</li>
  79. <li>If you don’t believe you can contribute to a meeting, let the organiser know and don’t attend</li>
  80. <li>Ensure all meetings have an agenda and that actions are recorded</li>
  81. <li>If you can’t attend or need to leave early from a meeting notify the team beforehand</li>
  82. <li>Come prepared to meetings</li>
  83. <li>Be on time for Stand Ups and meetings</li>
  84. <li>Mobile phones on silent</li>
  85. <li>Everyone has equal voice and valuable contribution.</li>
  86. </ul>
  87. <h2>Communication</h2>
  88. <ul>
  89. <li>Raise a problem as soon as you see it</li>
  90. <li>Face-to-face conversations over email, anytime</li>
  91. <li>Respect each other and understand differences in knowledge</li>
  92. <li>All team documents are to be shared</li>
  93. <li>There are no silly questions, if you don’t understand, ask</li>
  94. <li>Share success stories</li>
  95. <li>Focus on the positives</li>
  96. <li>Don’t make assumptions</li>
  97. <li>Don’t interrupt and cut another person off while they are talking</li>
  98. <li>Listen when someone is talking, don’t interject</li>
  99. <li>We have zero tolerance for bullying.</li>
  100. <li>Communication in this order: Face to face, phone call, Instant Message then email</li>
  101. <li>Publish phone numbers and open and share calendars</li>
  102. <li>Use Slack as the primary method of team communication.</li>
  103. </ul>
  104. <h2>Agile way of working</h2>
  105. <ul>
  106. <li>If are assigned a job, take ownership of it and keep it up to date</li>
  107. <li>Stick to your agreed working patterns. Let the team know when you are late or going early</li>
  108. <li> If you think you need to work late to get the work done please highlight this to the iteration manager</li>
  109. <li>Update cards before the Stand Up</li>
  110. <li>Engage with a person before assigning and handing over a card</li>
  111. <li>Keep JIRA board updated at all times.</li>
  112. <li>Update the Scrum Board as you progress the story i.e. don’t update at standup.</li>
  113. <li>Whoever breaks the build, fixes the build.</li>
  114. <li>When Pair Programming, turn off distractions (email, IM)</li>
  115. <li>Sufficient documentation, don’t document for the sheer heck of it</li>
  116. <li>Ask or help</li>
  117. <li>Solve roadblocks within the team. If the impediment can’t be solved within the team then give it to the Scrum Master.</li>
  118. </ul>
  119. <h1>Now it&#8217;s your turn</h1>
  120. <p>Now that I&#8217;ve shown you how and why to build a Social Contract, it&#8217;s time to roll up your sleeves and build one with your own team. Have fun in the process and let me know what a difference it makes to your team over time.</p>
  121. <p>&nbsp;</p>
  122. <p>This post was originally published on <a href="https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/social-contracts-agile-teams-ethann-castell/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">LinkedIn</a>.</p>
  123. <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="http://www.ethann.com/social-contracts-for-agile-teams/">Social Contracts for Agile Teams</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="http://www.ethann.com">Ethann Castell</a>.</p>
  124. ]]></content:encoded>
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  127. <post-id xmlns="com-wordpress:feed-additions:1">760</post-id> </item>
  128. <item>
  129. <title>Five Inconvenient Truths about Agile</title>
  130. <link>http://www.ethann.com/five-inconvenient-truths-agile/</link>
  131. <comments>http://www.ethann.com/five-inconvenient-truths-agile/#respond</comments>
  132. <pubDate>Mon, 19 Feb 2018 09:20:16 +0000</pubDate>
  133. <dc:creator><![CDATA[Ethann Castell]]></dc:creator>
  134. <category><![CDATA[Agile]]></category>
  135.  
  136. <guid isPermaLink="false">http://www.ethann.com/?p=758</guid>
  137. <description><![CDATA[<p>It probably won’t come as any surprise that I like Agile. I’ve been using it for many years now and I’ve come to appreciate many of the nuances built into the approach that aren’t immediately obvious on first glance. I find it to be an especially powerful approach to new product development. But like many new tools and practices, Agile has been over-hyped and promoted as a “silver bullet”, particularly by the Agile zealots around, many of whom have a vested interest in promoting Agile as they drive a substantial income from Agile consulting and training. I see myself as an Agile enthusiast rather than an Agile evangelist because I don&#8217;t believe that Agile is the solution to every problem. In an effort to balance-out this hype, I am going to present five of the most inconvenient truths about Agile. #1 Agile is Scrum Agile is an umbrella term, covering many different practices including Scrum, DSDM, XP, Crystal, Kanban, Lean and so on. Many Agile practitioners don’t like how a lot if people think that Agile is only Scrum, and there is a lot more to Agile than just Scrum. However the reality is that for the majority organisations Agile does only mean Scrum. In the most recent State of Agile survey, 68% of respondents reported that they used Scrum or a Scrum/XP combination, so that means that for two out of every three Agile organisations, Agile = Scrum. #2 Agile isn’t the best solution for every problem Agile is best suited to solving a..</p>
  138. <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="http://www.ethann.com/five-inconvenient-truths-agile/">Five Inconvenient Truths about Agile</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="http://www.ethann.com">Ethann Castell</a>.</p>
  139. ]]></description>
  140. <content:encoded><![CDATA[<p>It probably won’t come as any surprise that I like Agile. I’ve been using it for many years now and I’ve come to appreciate many of the nuances built into the approach that aren’t immediately obvious on first glance. I find it to be an especially powerful approach to new product development. But like many new tools and practices, Agile has been over-hyped and promoted as a “silver bullet”, particularly by the Agile zealots around, many of whom have a vested interest in promoting Agile as they drive a substantial income from Agile consulting and training. I see myself as an Agile <em>enthusiast</em> rather than an Agile <em>evangelist</em> because I don&#8217;t believe that Agile is the solution to every problem. In an effort to balance-out this hype, I am going to present five of the most inconvenient truths about Agile.</p>
  141. <h2>#1 Agile is Scrum</h2>
  142. <p><img data-attachment-id="767" data-permalink="http://www.ethann.com/five-inconvenient-truths-agile/agile-is-scrum/" data-orig-file="https://i0.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/agile-is-scrum.jpg?fit=500%2C350" data-orig-size="500,350" data-comments-opened="1" data-image-meta="{&quot;aperture&quot;:&quot;0&quot;,&quot;credit&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;camera&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;caption&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;created_timestamp&quot;:&quot;0&quot;,&quot;copyright&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;focal_length&quot;:&quot;0&quot;,&quot;iso&quot;:&quot;0&quot;,&quot;shutter_speed&quot;:&quot;0&quot;,&quot;title&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;orientation&quot;:&quot;0&quot;}" data-image-title="agile-is-scrum" data-image-description="" data-medium-file="https://i0.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/agile-is-scrum.jpg?fit=300%2C210" data-large-file="https://i0.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/agile-is-scrum.jpg?fit=500%2C350" class="size-medium wp-image-767 alignnone" src="https://i0.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/agile-is-scrum.jpg?resize=300%2C210" alt="" width="300" height="210" srcset="https://i0.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/agile-is-scrum.jpg?resize=300%2C210 300w, https://i0.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/agile-is-scrum.jpg?resize=400%2C280 400w, https://i0.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/agile-is-scrum.jpg?w=500 500w" sizes="(max-width: 300px) 100vw, 300px" data-recalc-dims="1" /></p>
  143. <p>Agile is an umbrella term, covering many different practices including Scrum, DSDM, XP, Crystal, Kanban, Lean and so on. Many Agile practitioners don’t like how a lot if people think that Agile is only Scrum, and there is a lot more to Agile than just Scrum. However the reality is that for the majority organisations Agile does <strong>only</strong> mean Scrum. In the most recent State of Agile survey, 68% of respondents reported that they used Scrum or a Scrum/XP combination, so that means that for two out of every three Agile organisations, Agile = Scrum.</p>
  144. <h2>#2 Agile isn’t the best solution for every problem</h2>
  145. <p>Agile is best suited to solving a certain types of problems. It is not a panacea that can, nor should be, used to solve all problems. In their article <a href="https://hbr.org/2016/05/embracing-agile">Embracing Agile</a> for The Harvard Business Review, Darrell K. Rigby, Jeff Sutherland and Hirotaka Takeuchi provided the following table to help identify the type of projects that Agile is best-suited to.</p>
  146. <table>
  147. <tbody>
  148. <tr>
  149. <td width="156"><strong>CONDITIONS</strong></td>
  150. <td width="301"><strong>FAVORABLE</strong></td>
  151. <td width="302"><strong>UNFAVORABLE</strong></td>
  152. </tr>
  153. <tr>
  154. <td><strong>Market Environment</strong></td>
  155. <td>Customer preferences and solution options change frequently.</td>
  156. <td>Market conditions are stable and predictable.</td>
  157. </tr>
  158. <tr>
  159. <td><strong>Customer Involvement</strong></td>
  160. <td>Close collaboration and rapid feedback are feasible.</p>
  161. <p>Customers know better what they want as the process progresses.</td>
  162. <td>Requirements are clear at the outset and will remain stable.</p>
  163. <p>Customers are unavailable for constant collaboration.</td>
  164. </tr>
  165. <tr>
  166. <td><strong>Innovation Type</strong></td>
  167. <td>Problems are complex, solutions are unknown, and the scope isn’t clearly defined. Product specifications may change. Creative breakthroughs and time to market are important.</p>
  168. <p>Cross-functional collaboration is vital.</td>
  169. <td>Similar work has been done before, and innovators believe the solutions are clear. Detailed specifications and work plans can be forecast with confidence and should be adhered to. Problems can be solved sequentially in functional silos.</td>
  170. </tr>
  171. <tr>
  172. <td><strong>Modularity of Work</strong></td>
  173. <td>Incremental developments have value, and customers can use them.<br />
  174. Work can be broken into parts and conducted in rapid, iterative cycles.Late changes are manageable.</td>
  175. <td>Customers cannot start testing parts of the product until everything is complete.</p>
  176. <p>Late changes are expensive or impossible.</td>
  177. </tr>
  178. <tr>
  179. <td><strong>Impact of Interim Mistakes</strong></td>
  180. <td>They provide valuable learning.</td>
  181. <td>They may be catastrophic.</td>
  182. </tr>
  183. </tbody>
  184. </table>
  185. <h2>#3 Agile is difficult</h2>
  186. <p><img data-attachment-id="768" data-permalink="http://www.ethann.com/five-inconvenient-truths-agile/agile-is-difficult/" data-orig-file="https://i1.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/agile-is-difficult.jpg?fit=1920%2C993" data-orig-size="1920,993" data-comments-opened="1" data-image-meta="{&quot;aperture&quot;:&quot;9&quot;,&quot;credit&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;camera&quot;:&quot;NIKON D5200&quot;,&quot;caption&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;created_timestamp&quot;:&quot;0&quot;,&quot;copyright&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;focal_length&quot;:&quot;98&quot;,&quot;iso&quot;:&quot;100&quot;,&quot;shutter_speed&quot;:&quot;0.005&quot;,&quot;title&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;orientation&quot;:&quot;0&quot;}" data-image-title="agile-is-difficult" data-image-description="" data-medium-file="https://i1.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/agile-is-difficult.jpg?fit=300%2C155" data-large-file="https://i1.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/agile-is-difficult.jpg?fit=1024%2C530" class="size-medium wp-image-768 alignnone" src="https://i1.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/agile-is-difficult.jpg?resize=300%2C155" alt="" width="300" height="155" srcset="https://i1.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/agile-is-difficult.jpg?resize=300%2C155 300w, https://i1.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/agile-is-difficult.jpg?resize=768%2C397 768w, https://i1.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/agile-is-difficult.jpg?resize=1024%2C530 1024w, https://i1.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/agile-is-difficult.jpg?resize=400%2C207 400w" sizes="(max-width: 300px) 100vw, 300px" data-recalc-dims="1" /></p>
  187. <p>Agile concepts are fairly simple. The Agile Manifesto has only four lines of text, and there are only 12 Agile Principles. The Scrum Guide is only 16 pages long and can be read in under an hour. But while the concepts and ideas are relatively simple to understand, implementing them can be exceedingly difficult, especially in companies which have long-established legacy processes and a non-Agile culture. The Standford Group has been surveying IT project success for over 20 years and while their data shows that Agile provides a definite improvement over traditional (waterfall) project management, perhaps the most sobering statistic from them is the fact that 23% of large Agile projects are still unsuccessful! So don&#8217;t be fooled. Agile is simple, but not easy.</p>
  188. <h2>#4 Agile may not be faster</h2>
  189. <p>Many people mistakenly think that Agile means faster delivery, but Agile approaches generally optimise for Business Value &#8211; the focus is on delivering the highest Business Value first &#8211; rather than for speed of delivery. An Agile process for delivering business value is generally incremental in nature, allowing for the placing of “small bets” during an increment, and for changing of requirements of a subsequent increment based on the result of the previous “small bet”. While an incremental approach has many benefits, one increment may often require rework (refactoring) of already completed work; effort that theoretically wouldn’t have been required under a BDUF (Big Design Up Front) approach, where the various permutations had been factored in at the start. It is also arguable that each iteration includes overheads in repeating tasks (testing, management, deployment etc) which in total may outweigh the effort required if the tasks were performed just once for a larger piece of work.</p>
  190. <h2>#5 Agile is not for everyone</h2>
  191. <p><img data-attachment-id="769" data-permalink="http://www.ethann.com/five-inconvenient-truths-agile/agile-not-for-everyone/" data-orig-file="https://i2.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/agile-not-for-everyone.jpg?fit=1920%2C708" data-orig-size="1920,708" data-comments-opened="1" data-image-meta="{&quot;aperture&quot;:&quot;0&quot;,&quot;credit&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;camera&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;caption&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;created_timestamp&quot;:&quot;0&quot;,&quot;copyright&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;focal_length&quot;:&quot;0&quot;,&quot;iso&quot;:&quot;0&quot;,&quot;shutter_speed&quot;:&quot;0&quot;,&quot;title&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;orientation&quot;:&quot;0&quot;}" data-image-title="agile-not-for-everyone" data-image-description="" data-medium-file="https://i2.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/agile-not-for-everyone.jpg?fit=300%2C111" data-large-file="https://i2.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/agile-not-for-everyone.jpg?fit=1024%2C378" class="size-medium wp-image-769 alignnone" src="https://i1.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/agile-not-for-everyone-300x111.jpg?resize=300%2C111" alt="" width="300" height="111" srcset="https://i2.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/agile-not-for-everyone.jpg?resize=300%2C111 300w, https://i2.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/agile-not-for-everyone.jpg?resize=768%2C283 768w, https://i2.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/agile-not-for-everyone.jpg?resize=1024%2C378 1024w, https://i2.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/agile-not-for-everyone.jpg?resize=400%2C148 400w" sizes="(max-width: 300px) 100vw, 300px" data-recalc-dims="1" /></p>
  192. <p>Agile is based on high-performing, self-organising teams operating in an environment of trust and autonomy. These last two factors mean that teams, and the individuals within them, must take a much higher level of responsibility then they may have done in the pre-Agile world. The (sad?) fact is that many people don’t want to take this level of responsibility, or to work in such a highly-collaborative manner. Many software engineers, for example, like to work on their own and within clearly defined boundaries, boundaries specified by someone else. So while there are plenty of people who love working in an Agile manner, there are also plenty who don’t.</p>
  193. <h2>Choose the right tool for the problem</h2>
  194. <p><img data-attachment-id="770" data-permalink="http://www.ethann.com/five-inconvenient-truths-agile/choose-the-right-tool/" data-orig-file="https://i2.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/choose-the-right-tool.jpg?fit=1920%2C1280" data-orig-size="1920,1280" data-comments-opened="1" data-image-meta="{&quot;aperture&quot;:&quot;7.1&quot;,&quot;credit&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;camera&quot;:&quot;Canon EOS 80D&quot;,&quot;caption&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;created_timestamp&quot;:&quot;0&quot;,&quot;copyright&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;focal_length&quot;:&quot;38&quot;,&quot;iso&quot;:&quot;2500&quot;,&quot;shutter_speed&quot;:&quot;0.008&quot;,&quot;title&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;orientation&quot;:&quot;0&quot;}" data-image-title="choose-the-right-tool" data-image-description="" data-medium-file="https://i2.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/choose-the-right-tool.jpg?fit=300%2C200" data-large-file="https://i2.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/choose-the-right-tool.jpg?fit=1024%2C683" class="size-medium wp-image-770 alignnone" src="https://i2.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/choose-the-right-tool.jpg?resize=300%2C200" alt="" width="300" height="200" srcset="https://i2.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/choose-the-right-tool.jpg?resize=300%2C200 300w, https://i2.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/choose-the-right-tool.jpg?resize=768%2C512 768w, https://i2.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/choose-the-right-tool.jpg?resize=1024%2C683 1024w, https://i2.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/choose-the-right-tool.jpg?resize=400%2C267 400w" sizes="(max-width: 300px) 100vw, 300px" data-recalc-dims="1" /></p>
  195. <p>So there you have it, five inconvenient truths about Agile. These are not meant to discourage you from adopting Agile practice but rather to get you to confirm that the problems you are trying to solve with Agile, are the type of problems that Agile is best-suited to solving. Do you agree with my list, or not?  Let me know. Also feel free to let me know if you have any other inconvenient truths about Agile.</p>
  196. <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="http://www.ethann.com/five-inconvenient-truths-agile/">Five Inconvenient Truths about Agile</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="http://www.ethann.com">Ethann Castell</a>.</p>
  197. ]]></content:encoded>
  198. <wfw:commentRss>http://www.ethann.com/five-inconvenient-truths-agile/feed/</wfw:commentRss>
  199. <slash:comments>0</slash:comments>
  200. <post-id xmlns="com-wordpress:feed-additions:1">758</post-id> </item>
  201. <item>
  202. <title>Git and GitHub for Scrum Masters</title>
  203. <link>http://www.ethann.com/git-and-github-for-scrum-masters/</link>
  204. <comments>http://www.ethann.com/git-and-github-for-scrum-masters/#comments</comments>
  205. <pubDate>Tue, 29 Aug 2017 02:17:54 +0000</pubDate>
  206. <dc:creator><![CDATA[Ethann Castell]]></dc:creator>
  207. <category><![CDATA[Agile]]></category>
  208. <category><![CDATA[Git]]></category>
  209. <category><![CDATA[scrum]]></category>
  210.  
  211. <guid isPermaLink="false">http://www.ethann.com/?p=629</guid>
  212. <description><![CDATA[<p>Scrum Masters generally don&#8217;t need to have the same depth of technical skills as the software developers on their team.  However if your team is using Git for source code version control, then you as the Scrum Master or Iteration Manager, may find yourself bamboozled by terms such as HEAD, Master, Squash and Pull Request. This is the situation I found myself in recently, and even though I had previously used other version control systems such as CVS and SVN, I was still confused by discussions about Git. The search for Git understanding I got tired of having little understanding of what was being discussed in stand-ups, so I went on a mission to find a quick, yet comprehensive, introduction to Git and GitHub. There are many resources available on the internet, but most of them jump straight into creating your first Git repository, rather than explaining the concepts behind Git. Personally, I like to know what I&#8217;m doing, and why, before I do it, rather than just blindly following instructions to get a result but then not know what you&#8217;ve done or why.  For this reason I skipped on many of the internet resources which didn&#8217;t first explain, in some depth, what they were trying to do. So after many hours searching, and going down a few dead-end streets, I came up with three key resources which you can use to fast-track your understanding of Git. They won&#8217;t necessarily turn you into a Git master overnight, but they will enable you to better understand what..</p>
  213. <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="http://www.ethann.com/git-and-github-for-scrum-masters/">Git and GitHub for Scrum Masters</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="http://www.ethann.com">Ethann Castell</a>.</p>
  214. ]]></description>
  215. <content:encoded><![CDATA[<p>Scrum Masters generally don&#8217;t need to have the same depth of technical skills as the software developers on their team.  However if your team is using <a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Git" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Git</a> for source code version control, then you as the Scrum Master or Iteration Manager, may find yourself bamboozled by terms such as <a href="https://stackoverflow.com/questions/2304087/what-is-head-in-git" target="_blank" rel="noopener">HEAD</a>, <a href="https://stackoverflow.com/questions/8196544/what-are-the-git-concepts-of-head-master-origin" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Master</a>, <a href="https://coderwall.com/p/5_cjhw/squash-your-commits-with-git-rebase" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Squash</a> and <a href="https://www.atlassian.com/git/tutorials/making-a-pull-request" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Pull Request</a>. This is the situation I found myself in recently, and even though I had previously used other version control systems such as <a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Concurrent_Versions_System" target="_blank" rel="noopener">CVS</a> and <a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Apache_Subversion" target="_blank" rel="noopener">SVN</a>, I was still confused by discussions about Git.</p>
  216. <h2>The search for Git understanding</h2>
  217. <p>I got tired of having little understanding of what was being discussed in stand-ups, so I went on a mission to find a quick, yet comprehensive, introduction to Git and <a href="https://github.com/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">GitHub</a>. There are many resources available on the internet, but most of them jump straight into creating your first Git repository, rather than explaining the concepts behind Git. Personally, I like to know what I&#8217;m doing, and why, before I do it, rather than just blindly following instructions to get a result but then not know what you&#8217;ve done or why.  For this reason I skipped on many of the internet resources which didn&#8217;t first explain, in some depth, what they were trying to do.</p>
  218. <p>So after many hours searching, and going down a few dead-end streets, I came up with three key resources which you can use to fast-track your understanding of Git. They won&#8217;t necessarily turn you into a Git master overnight, but they will enable you to better understand what your developers are talking about, and I believe that having this high-level knowledge will make you a better Scrum Master or Iteration Manager.</p>
  219. <h2>What are Git and GitHub?</h2>
  220. <p><a href="https://i0.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/git-hosting.png"><img data-attachment-id="636" data-permalink="http://www.ethann.com/git-and-github-for-scrum-masters/git-hosting/" data-orig-file="https://i0.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/git-hosting.png?fit=640%2C450" data-orig-size="640,450" data-comments-opened="1" data-image-meta="{&quot;aperture&quot;:&quot;0&quot;,&quot;credit&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;camera&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;caption&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;created_timestamp&quot;:&quot;0&quot;,&quot;copyright&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;focal_length&quot;:&quot;0&quot;,&quot;iso&quot;:&quot;0&quot;,&quot;shutter_speed&quot;:&quot;0&quot;,&quot;title&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;orientation&quot;:&quot;0&quot;}" data-image-title="git-hosting" data-image-description="&lt;p&gt;Git hosting&lt;/p&gt;
  221. " data-medium-file="https://i0.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/git-hosting.png?fit=300%2C211" data-large-file="https://i0.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/git-hosting.png?fit=640%2C450" class="wp-image-636 size-medium aligncenter" src="https://i0.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/git-hosting.png?resize=300%2C211" alt="Git hosting" width="300" height="211" srcset="https://i0.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/git-hosting.png?resize=300%2C211 300w, https://i0.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/git-hosting.png?resize=400%2C281 400w, https://i0.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/git-hosting.png?w=640 640w" sizes="(max-width: 300px) 100vw, 300px" data-recalc-dims="1" /></a></p>
  222. <p><strong>Git</strong> is a version control system for tracking changes in computer files and coordinating work on those files among multiple people. <a href="http://manujbhatia.com/why-switch-to-git/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Git is now clearly the industry leader</a> and the <a href="https://rhodecode.com/insights/version-control-systems-2016" target="_blank" rel="noopener">world&#8217;s most popular source code management system</a>.</p>
  223. <p><strong>GitHub</strong> is a code hosting platform for version control and collaboration. It lets you and others work together on projects from anywhere. While GitHub is the most popular Git hosting platform, there are many alternative Git hosting platforms including <a href="https://bitbucket.org/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Atlassian&#8217;s BitBucket</a>, <a href="https://about.gitlab.com/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">GitLab</a>, <a href="https://www.visualstudio.com/team-services/git/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Visual Studio Team Services</a> and <a href="https://aws.amazon.com/codecommit/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Amazon Web Services Code Commit</a>.</p>
  224. <h2>Let&#8217;s Git started</h2>
  225. <p>So many <a href="https://github.com/EugeneKay/git-jokes" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Git puns</a>, so little time&#8230;</p>
  226. <p>Here are the three resources you need to upgrade your Git knowledge.</p>
  227. <h3>#1. Udacity course</h3>
  228. <p><a href="https://www.udacity.com/course/version-control-with-git--ud123" target="_blank" rel="noopener"><img data-attachment-id="648" data-permalink="http://www.ethann.com/git-and-github-for-scrum-masters/version-control-with-git/" data-orig-file="https://i1.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/version-control-with-git.png?fit=426%2C241" data-orig-size="426,241" data-comments-opened="1" data-image-meta="{&quot;aperture&quot;:&quot;0&quot;,&quot;credit&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;camera&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;caption&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;created_timestamp&quot;:&quot;0&quot;,&quot;copyright&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;focal_length&quot;:&quot;0&quot;,&quot;iso&quot;:&quot;0&quot;,&quot;shutter_speed&quot;:&quot;0&quot;,&quot;title&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;orientation&quot;:&quot;0&quot;}" data-image-title="Version Control With Git" data-image-description="" data-medium-file="https://i1.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/version-control-with-git.png?fit=300%2C170" data-large-file="https://i1.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/version-control-with-git.png?fit=426%2C241" class="wp-image-648 size-medium aligncenter" src="https://i1.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/version-control-with-git.png?resize=300%2C170" alt="" width="300" height="170" srcset="https://i1.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/version-control-with-git.png?resize=300%2C170 300w, https://i1.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/version-control-with-git.png?resize=400%2C226 400w, https://i1.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/version-control-with-git.png?w=426 426w" sizes="(max-width: 300px) 100vw, 300px" data-recalc-dims="1" /></a></p>
  229. <p>The primary resource I recommend are two excellent free <a href="https://www.udacity.com" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Udacity</a> courses by Richard Kalehoff.</p>
  230. <p><a href="https://www.udacity.com/course/version-control-with-git--ud123" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Version Control With Git</a></p>
  231. <p><a href="https://www.udacity.com/course/github-collaboration--ud456" target="_blank" rel="noopener">GitHub and Collaboration</a></p>
  232. <p>These two courses take you through the basics and do a very good job of explaining the concepts and ideas behind the technology.</p>
  233. <h3>#2. Git cheat sheet</h3>
  234. <p><a href="http://files.zeroturnaround.com/pdf/zt_git_cheat_sheet.pdf" target="_blank" rel="noopener"><img data-attachment-id="650" data-permalink="http://www.ethann.com/git-and-github-for-scrum-masters/git-cheat-sheet-v2/" data-orig-file="https://i1.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/git-cheat-sheet-v2.png?fit=439%2C310" data-orig-size="439,310" data-comments-opened="1" data-image-meta="{&quot;aperture&quot;:&quot;0&quot;,&quot;credit&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;camera&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;caption&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;created_timestamp&quot;:&quot;0&quot;,&quot;copyright&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;focal_length&quot;:&quot;0&quot;,&quot;iso&quot;:&quot;0&quot;,&quot;shutter_speed&quot;:&quot;0&quot;,&quot;title&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;orientation&quot;:&quot;0&quot;}" data-image-title="Git-Cheat-Sheet-v2" data-image-description="" data-medium-file="https://i1.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/git-cheat-sheet-v2.png?fit=300%2C212" data-large-file="https://i1.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/git-cheat-sheet-v2.png?fit=439%2C310" class="aligncenter wp-image-650 size-medium" src="https://i1.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/git-cheat-sheet-v2.png?resize=300%2C212" alt="" width="300" height="212" srcset="https://i1.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/git-cheat-sheet-v2.png?resize=300%2C212 300w, https://i1.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/git-cheat-sheet-v2.png?resize=400%2C282 400w, https://i1.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/git-cheat-sheet-v2.png?w=439 439w" sizes="(max-width: 300px) 100vw, 300px" data-recalc-dims="1" /></a></p>
  235. <p>Supplement the courses with the <a href="http://files.zeroturnaround.com/pdf/zt_git_cheat_sheet.pdf" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Git Cheat Sheet</a> by ZeroTurnaround.</p>
  236. <p>This includes a really nice diagram of the different Git stages, which helps no-end when learning the concepts. Keep a copy of this cheat sheet handy while you go through the Udacity courses.</p>
  237. <h3>#3. Pro Git book</h3>
  238. <p><a href="https://git-scm.com/book/en/v2" target="_blank" rel="noopener"><img data-attachment-id="649" data-permalink="http://www.ethann.com/git-and-github-for-scrum-masters/progit2/" data-orig-file="https://i1.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/progit2.png?fit=250%2C330" data-orig-size="250,330" data-comments-opened="1" data-image-meta="{&quot;aperture&quot;:&quot;0&quot;,&quot;credit&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;camera&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;caption&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;created_timestamp&quot;:&quot;0&quot;,&quot;copyright&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;focal_length&quot;:&quot;0&quot;,&quot;iso&quot;:&quot;0&quot;,&quot;shutter_speed&quot;:&quot;0&quot;,&quot;title&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;orientation&quot;:&quot;0&quot;}" data-image-title="progit2" data-image-description="" data-medium-file="https://i1.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/progit2.png?fit=227%2C300" data-large-file="https://i1.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/progit2.png?fit=250%2C330" class="aligncenter wp-image-649 size-medium" src="https://i1.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/progit2.png?resize=227%2C300" alt="" width="227" height="300" srcset="https://i1.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/progit2.png?resize=227%2C300 227w, https://i1.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/progit2.png?w=250 250w" sizes="(max-width: 227px) 100vw, 227px" data-recalc-dims="1" /></a></p>
  239. <p>Lastly, use the free <a href="https://git-scm.com/book/en/v2" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Pro Git book</a> (by Scott Chacon and Ben Straub) as a way of re-enforcing what you&#8217;ve learnt.</p>
  240. <p>The content in this book is denser than the Udacity courses, so I&#8217;d suggest that you learn a topic on Udacity first and then follow up with the book. However, some people may find they prefer the book format.</p>
  241. <h2>Git going</h2>
  242. <p><img data-attachment-id="655" data-permalink="http://www.ethann.com/git-and-github-for-scrum-masters/git-joke/" data-orig-file="https://i1.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/git-joke.png?fit=330%2C478" data-orig-size="330,478" data-comments-opened="1" data-image-meta="{&quot;aperture&quot;:&quot;0&quot;,&quot;credit&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;camera&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;caption&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;created_timestamp&quot;:&quot;0&quot;,&quot;copyright&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;focal_length&quot;:&quot;0&quot;,&quot;iso&quot;:&quot;0&quot;,&quot;shutter_speed&quot;:&quot;0&quot;,&quot;title&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;orientation&quot;:&quot;0&quot;}" data-image-title="git joke" data-image-description="" data-medium-file="https://i1.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/git-joke.png?fit=207%2C300" data-large-file="https://i1.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/git-joke.png?fit=330%2C478" class="wp-image-655 size-full aligncenter" src="https://i1.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/git-joke.png?resize=330%2C478" alt="" width="330" height="478" srcset="https://i1.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/git-joke.png?w=330 330w, https://i1.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/git-joke.png?resize=207%2C300 207w" sizes="(max-width: 330px) 100vw, 330px" data-recalc-dims="1" /></p>
  243. <p>These resources will give you the knowledge and understanding you need to feel comfortable around Git discussions with your developers. Now it&#8217;s up to you to use them, so Git going!</p>
  244. <p>Do I miss something? Have you got some other great Git learning resources? Post a comment and let me know.</p>
  245. <p>&nbsp;</p>
  246. <p>&nbsp;</p>
  247. <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="http://www.ethann.com/git-and-github-for-scrum-masters/">Git and GitHub for Scrum Masters</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="http://www.ethann.com">Ethann Castell</a>.</p>
  248. ]]></content:encoded>
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  250. <slash:comments>1</slash:comments>
  251. <post-id xmlns="com-wordpress:feed-additions:1">629</post-id> </item>
  252. <item>
  253. <title>Don&#8217;t be the first to miss out on LAST Canberra!</title>
  254. <link>http://www.ethann.com/dont-first-miss-last-canberra/</link>
  255. <comments>http://www.ethann.com/dont-first-miss-last-canberra/#respond</comments>
  256. <pubDate>Wed, 23 Aug 2017 08:01:05 +0000</pubDate>
  257. <dc:creator><![CDATA[Ethann Castell]]></dc:creator>
  258. <category><![CDATA[Agile]]></category>
  259. <category><![CDATA[Events]]></category>
  260. <category><![CDATA[Lean]]></category>
  261. <category><![CDATA[Systems Thinking]]></category>
  262.  
  263. <guid isPermaLink="false">http://www.ethann.com/?p=620</guid>
  264. <description><![CDATA[<p>The LAST Conference is taking place in Canberra on September 14th, and if you&#8217;re in the vicinity then I highly recommend that you attend. Tickets are selling fast but they tell me that at the time of publishing this post, there are still some spaces available. LAST Sydney was great LAST is an acronym for (Lean Agile and Systems Thinking) and as you might expect with a name like that, the topics covered tend to be somewhat broader in scope than the topics which feature at other Agile conferences. I attended the LAST Conference in Sydney in July and found it covered some refreshingly different topics than say Agile Tour or Scrum Australia. Don&#8217;t get me wrong, those are both awesome events which I continue to attend, but after attending LAST I felt like I had spread my wings a little and taken a step into new territory. In case you need more incentives, here are three four great reasons to attend LAST Canberra. 1. Variety of topics I mentioned this earlier but it&#8217;s worth repeating, because LAST covers topics not just from Agile, but also from Lean and Systems Thinking, you&#8217;ll have numerous opportunities to learn new stuff from domains outside of the standard Agile/Scrum fare. So if you&#8217;re finding that Agile/Scrum conferences and meetups are becoming repetitive then this might just be the thing for you. Case in point, Norman Bodek, known as the “The Godfather of Lean”, will be dialing in from Seattle to give a presentation during the event. 2. Value for..</p>
  265. <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="http://www.ethann.com/dont-first-miss-last-canberra/">Don&#8217;t be the first to miss out on LAST Canberra!</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="http://www.ethann.com">Ethann Castell</a>.</p>
  266. ]]></description>
  267. <content:encoded><![CDATA[<p>The <a href="https://www.lastconference.com/canberra/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">LAST Conference is taking place in Canberra</a> on September 14th, and if you&#8217;re in the vicinity then I highly recommend that you attend. <a href="https://www.eventbrite.com.au/e/last-conference-canberra-2017-registration-35451347936" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Tickets</a> are selling fast but they tell me that at the time of publishing this post, there are still some spaces available.</p>
  268. <h2>LAST Sydney was great</h2>
  269. <p>LAST is an acronym for (Lean Agile and Systems Thinking) and as you might expect with a name like that, the topics covered tend to be somewhat broader in scope than the topics which feature at other Agile conferences. I attended the<a href="https://www.lastconference.com/sydney/" target="_blank" rel="noopener"> LAST Conference in Sydney</a> in July and found it covered some refreshingly different topics than say <a href="https://www.eventbrite.com.au/e/agile-tour-sydney-2017-tickets-29363059702" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Agile Tour</a> or <a href="http://scrum.com.au/2017/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Scrum Australia</a>. Don&#8217;t get me wrong, those are both awesome events which I continue to attend, but after attending LAST I felt like I had spread my wings a little and taken a step into new territory.</p>
  270. <p>In case you need more incentives, here are <del>three</del> four great reasons to attend LAST Canberra.</p>
  271. <h2>1. Variety of topics</h2>
  272. <p>I mentioned this earlier but it&#8217;s worth repeating, because LAST covers topics not just from Agile, but also from Lean and Systems Thinking, you&#8217;ll have numerous opportunities to learn new stuff from domains outside of the standard Agile/Scrum fare. So if you&#8217;re finding that Agile/Scrum conferences and meetups are becoming repetitive then this might just be the thing for you. Case in point, <a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Norman_Bodek" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Norman Bodek</a>, known as the “The Godfather of Lean”, will be dialing in from Seattle to give a presentation during the event.</p>
  273. <h2>2. Value for money</h2>
  274. <p>Tickets are less than $150 and that includes food and beverages throughout the day.  Amazingly cheap if you ask me.</p>
  275. <h2>3. Canberra is cool</h2>
  276. <p>Ok, maybe not Sydney cool, but seriously, Canberra can be a pretty cool place. If you haven&#8217;t been there for a while you might be surprised at how it&#8217;s changed. If you need further convincing then  one of the organisers, <a href="http://canberra.leancoffee.org/2017/07/24/come-to-last-in-canberra-because-canberra-is-not-all-bad/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Alex Sloley, has blogged about why you should come to Canberra for LAST Canberra</a>.  <strong>Apparently they have better coffee than Melbourne!</strong></p>
  277. <h2>4. Community</h2>
  278. <p>The one thing that LAST does share with events list Agile Tour and Scrum Australia is that you have plenty of opportunities to interact with members of the community, including the presenters,  and to build new relationships.  Often this can be the most valuable part of the day.</p>
  279. <p>&nbsp;</p>
  280. <p>So there you have it. Four great reasons to attend the LAST Conference in Canberra. <a href="https://www.eventbrite.com.au/e/last-conference-canberra-2017-registration-35451347936" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Get your tickets now</a> before they sell out.</p>
  281. <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="http://www.ethann.com/dont-first-miss-last-canberra/">Don&#8217;t be the first to miss out on LAST Canberra!</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="http://www.ethann.com">Ethann Castell</a>.</p>
  282. ]]></content:encoded>
  283. <wfw:commentRss>http://www.ethann.com/dont-first-miss-last-canberra/feed/</wfw:commentRss>
  284. <slash:comments>0</slash:comments>
  285. <post-id xmlns="com-wordpress:feed-additions:1">620</post-id> </item>
  286. <item>
  287. <title>Get my Agile book for free &#8211; 24 hours only!</title>
  288. <link>http://www.ethann.com/get-agile-book-free-24-hours/</link>
  289. <comments>http://www.ethann.com/get-agile-book-free-24-hours/#comments</comments>
  290. <pubDate>Thu, 10 Aug 2017 01:57:47 +0000</pubDate>
  291. <dc:creator><![CDATA[Ethann Castell]]></dc:creator>
  292. <category><![CDATA[Agile]]></category>
  293. <category><![CDATA[Books]]></category>
  294.  
  295. <guid isPermaLink="false">http://www.ethann.com/?p=613</guid>
  296. <description><![CDATA[<p>Update: The free period has now ended but you can still purchase this book through Amazon in either paperback or Kindle editions. Thank you to all those who downloaded my book. The Kindle edition of my book Awesome Agile Ceremonies &#8211; 104 techniques to energise your Agile teams is free to download for the next 24 hours. I wrote this book earlier this year to help Scrum Masters and Iteration Managers spice up their Agile ceremonies and energize their team. If you enjoy this book then please share with your friends and feel free to leave a review on Amazon. Enjoy!</p>
  297. <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="http://www.ethann.com/get-agile-book-free-24-hours/">Get my Agile book for free &#8211; 24 hours only!</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="http://www.ethann.com">Ethann Castell</a>.</p>
  298. ]]></description>
  299. <content:encoded><![CDATA[<p><strong>Update</strong>: The free period has now ended but you can still <a href="https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1544138288?tag=thann-20" target="_blank" rel="noopener">purchase this book through Amazon</a> in either paperback or Kindle editions. Thank you to all those who downloaded my book.</p>
  300. <hr />
  301. <p>The Kindle edition of my book <a href="http://www.ethann.com/book/awesome-agile-ceremonies/">Awesome Agile Ceremonies &#8211; 104 techniques to energise your Agile teams</a> is free to download for the next 24 hours.</p>
  302. <p>I wrote this book earlier this year to help Scrum Masters and Iteration Managers spice up their Agile ceremonies and energize their team.</p>
  303. <p>If you enjoy this book then please share with your friends and feel free to leave a review on Amazon.</p>
  304. <p>Enjoy!</p>
  305. <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="http://www.ethann.com/get-agile-book-free-24-hours/">Get my Agile book for free &#8211; 24 hours only!</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="http://www.ethann.com">Ethann Castell</a>.</p>
  306. ]]></content:encoded>
  307. <wfw:commentRss>http://www.ethann.com/get-agile-book-free-24-hours/feed/</wfw:commentRss>
  308. <slash:comments>5</slash:comments>
  309. <post-id xmlns="com-wordpress:feed-additions:1">613</post-id> </item>
  310. <item>
  311. <title>Five tips for passing the PMI Agile Certified Practitioner (PMI-ACP) exam</title>
  312. <link>http://www.ethann.com/five-tips-passing-pmi-agile-certified-practitioner-pmi-acp-exam/</link>
  313. <comments>http://www.ethann.com/five-tips-passing-pmi-agile-certified-practitioner-pmi-acp-exam/#respond</comments>
  314. <pubDate>Sun, 30 Jul 2017 22:00:00 +0000</pubDate>
  315. <dc:creator><![CDATA[Ethann Castell]]></dc:creator>
  316. <category><![CDATA[Agile]]></category>
  317. <category><![CDATA[Certification]]></category>
  318. <category><![CDATA[Kanban]]></category>
  319. <category><![CDATA[Lean]]></category>
  320. <category><![CDATA[pmi-acp]]></category>
  321. <category><![CDATA[scrum]]></category>
  322. <category><![CDATA[XP]]></category>
  323.  
  324. <guid isPermaLink="false">http://www.ethann.com/?p=575</guid>
  325. <description><![CDATA[<p>I recently passed the PMI Agile Certified Practitioner (PMI-ACP) exam and wanted to share some tips to help others with this exam. As with other PMI certifications, you&#8217;ll need in-depth knowledge of the subject matter to pass this exam.  You should not underestimate the difficulty of the PMI-ACP exam. If you&#8217;ve passed your Certified Scrum Master (CSM) exam, be aware that the PMI-ACP is a much more difficult exam &#8211; I would say that the PMI-ACP is in a different league than the CSM. But hopefully your journey will become a lot easier with my five tips. #1. Spend $15 The best investment I made was to spend $15 on the PMI-ACP Agile Certified Exam Prep course on Udemy. The course normally sells for around $200 but Udemy regularly has sales where the prices are slashed.  So just be a little patient and wait for one of these sales. The best thing about Udemy course is that you can download the lectures on to your phone or tablet, and then watch them anywhere, anytime, and without incurring data costs.  If you commute to work by bus or train then this time can now become study time. Spare time, such as waiting for a friend to join you for lunch, can also now be used to study for the exam. You&#8217;ll be surprised at how many small opportunities you get throughout the day to do a few minutes of study.  And it all adds up. Please be aware that the course has a few rough edges but bang-for-buck..</p>
  326. <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="http://www.ethann.com/five-tips-passing-pmi-agile-certified-practitioner-pmi-acp-exam/">Five tips for passing the PMI Agile Certified Practitioner (PMI-ACP) exam</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="http://www.ethann.com">Ethann Castell</a>.</p>
  327. ]]></description>
  328. <content:encoded><![CDATA[<p>I recently passed the <a href="http://www.pmi.org/certifications/types/agile-acp" target="_blank" rel="noopener">PMI Agile Certified Practitioner (PMI-ACP)</a> exam and wanted to share some tips to help others with this exam. As with other PMI certifications, you&#8217;ll need in-depth knowledge of the subject matter to pass this exam.  You <a href="http://www.deepfriedbrainproject.com/2013/10/pmi-acp-exam-passed-lessons-learned-study-tips.html" target="_blank" rel="noopener">should not underestimate the difficulty of the PMI-ACP exam</a>. If you&#8217;ve passed your <a href="http://www.scrumalliance.org/certifications/practitioners/certified-scrummaster-csm" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Certified Scrum Master (CSM)</a> exam, be aware that the PMI-ACP is a much more difficult exam &#8211; I would say that the PMI-ACP is in a different league than the CSM. But hopefully your journey will become a lot easier with my five tips.</p>
  329. <h2>#1. Spend $15</h2>
  330. <p>The best investment I made was to spend $15 on the <a href="http://www.udemy.com/pmi_acp_exam_prep" target="_blank" rel="noopener">PMI-ACP Agile Certified Exam Prep course on Udemy</a>. The course normally sells for around $200 but Udemy regularly has sales where the prices are slashed.  So just be a little patient and wait for one of these sales.</p>
  331. <p>The best thing about Udemy course is that you can download the lectures on to your phone or tablet, and then watch them anywhere, anytime, and without incurring data costs.  If you commute to work by bus or train then this time can now become study time. Spare time, such as waiting for a friend to join you for lunch, can also now be used to study for the exam. You&#8217;ll be surprised at how many small opportunities you get throughout the day to do a few minutes of study.  And it all adds up.</p>
  332. <p>Please be aware that the course has a few rough edges but bang-for-buck this is the best resource I found out there.</p>
  333. <h2>#2. Don&#8217;t try to cram</h2>
  334. <p>You may have heard this before but I&#8217;ll repeat it anyway. You cannot cram for the PMI-ACP exam! By and large, the questions do not ask you to remember lists, meanings or formulas. Most of the questions are situational and require you to apply the Agile mindset to determine the correct answer. The only way to study for this exam is to immerse yourself in the Agile mindset.</p>
  335. <h2>#3. Avoid most online question banks</h2>
  336. <p>There are a lot of free question banks out there. I tried a few out but found that the quality was often low &#8211; often the answers would be incorrect, or the question or answers simply didn&#8217;t make sense. Many of these question banks are just hooks for trying to get you purchase something else.  There may be some good ones out there but I didn&#8217;t find any.</p>
  337. <h2>#4. The 24 hours beforehand</h2>
  338. <p>The 24 hours before the exam is perhaps the most important time period in relation to passing the PMI-ACP. Here are some things I did, or wished that I had done.</p>
  339. <h3>Don&#8217;t study the night before</h3>
  340. <p>Back in my high school days I used to often spend the night before an exam cramming until the early hours of the morning. But for the PMI-ACP exam I was advised, and I can highly recommend, to take the night off and not do any study. That&#8217;s right, zero! Think of yourself as an athlete about to compete in a race; the last thing you should do is train the night before the big event.</p>
  341. <h3>Sleep</h3>
  342. <p>Get a good nights sleep so that you are refreshed and at your best. This is one that I wished I had followed and lack of a good nights sleep did make the exam more difficult.</p>
  343. <h3>Food</h3>
  344. <p>The exam can take up to three hours. If you add time for arriving early, and for actually getting to the exam, then you&#8217;re easily looking at four hours or more.  Your brain and body need sustenance to work properly so make sure that you have eaten well and are sufficiently hydrated and caffeinated.</p>
  345. <h3>Exam scheduling</h3>
  346. <p>Think about the time of day you are sitting your exam.  I&#8217;m not much of a morning person but scheduled the exam for 8am, which didn&#8217;t seem that early.  Of course when you add in turning up 30 minutes before the exam, time for breakfast and commuting time, it can all add up to a much earlier start.  Personally, if I was doing the exam again I would probably schedule a session for later in the day.</p>
  347. <h2>#5. During the exam</h2>
  348. <h3>Don&#8217;t freak out</h3>
  349. <p>On the exam, when you&#8217;re unsure of an answer, you can mark questions for later review. It&#8217;s quite common on this exam to mark a lot of questions for later review, especially at the beginning of the exam. I think I marked six out of the first ten for review.  Don&#8217;t freak out if this happens to you.  The questions do seem to become easier as you progress through the exam. Perhaps it&#8217;s a case of getting used to the way that the questions are being asked.</p>
  350. <h3>Pace yourself</h3>
  351. <p>You have three hours to complete the exam and there are 120 questions. So if you take one minute per question then this will take two hours and still leave you with an hour to review your answers. And many of the questions will take you a lot less than one minute to answer.</p>
  352. <h3>Take breaks</h3>
  353. <p>You are allowed to take breaks during the exam. The clock won&#8217;t stop but it can be beneficial to get out of the exam room, stretch and maybe have a glass of water.  I did this after I had made my first pass through the questions, and consider it to be five minutes well spent.</p>
  354. <h3>Some of the questions and answers are stupid</h3>
  355. <p>Be aware that a few of questions and/or answers just may not make sense.  At the end of the exam there was one question which I spent about five minutes trying to understand. It just seemed like none of the answers were right. In the end I just guessed. You may encounter this as well. Don&#8217;t get hung up on it.  Just mark the question and come back to it later. Most of the questions and answers do make sense.</p>
  356. <h2>#6. (Bonus) Join the LinkedIn Group</h2>
  357. <p>I would recommend joining the <a href="http://www.linkedin.com/groups/3809643" target="_blank" rel="noopener">PMI® Agile Certified Practitioner PMI-ACP Exam Prep Study Group</a> on LinkedIn. It&#8217;s a good place to post questions and read about other people&#8217;s success with the exam.</p>
  358. <p>&nbsp;</p>
  359. <p>Good luck!</p>
  360. <p>&nbsp;</p>
  361. <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="http://www.ethann.com/five-tips-passing-pmi-agile-certified-practitioner-pmi-acp-exam/">Five tips for passing the PMI Agile Certified Practitioner (PMI-ACP) exam</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="http://www.ethann.com">Ethann Castell</a>.</p>
  362. ]]></content:encoded>
  363. <wfw:commentRss>http://www.ethann.com/five-tips-passing-pmi-agile-certified-practitioner-pmi-acp-exam/feed/</wfw:commentRss>
  364. <slash:comments>0</slash:comments>
  365. <post-id xmlns="com-wordpress:feed-additions:1">575</post-id> </item>
  366. <item>
  367. <title>Inaugural Scrum Coach Retreat Sydney</title>
  368. <link>http://www.ethann.com/scrum-coach-retreat/</link>
  369. <comments>http://www.ethann.com/scrum-coach-retreat/#respond</comments>
  370. <pubDate>Sun, 02 Apr 2017 21:38:34 +0000</pubDate>
  371. <dc:creator><![CDATA[Ethann Castell]]></dc:creator>
  372. <category><![CDATA[Agile]]></category>
  373. <category><![CDATA[Coaching]]></category>
  374. <category><![CDATA[scrum]]></category>
  375.  
  376. <guid isPermaLink="false">http://www.ethann.com/?p=565</guid>
  377. <description><![CDATA[<p>The Scrum Alliance is hosting the inaugural Sydney Scrum Coach Retreat from May 5 &#8211; 7 in Coogee. It&#8217;s 2 1/2 days of deep-dive learning combined with many opportunities to extend professional relationships within the community. Sounds like a bargain at just over $500.  Register now and I&#8217;ll see you there.</p>
  378. <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="http://www.ethann.com/scrum-coach-retreat/">Inaugural Scrum Coach Retreat Sydney</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="http://www.ethann.com">Ethann Castell</a>.</p>
  379. ]]></description>
  380. <content:encoded><![CDATA[<p>The <a href="https://www.scrumalliance.org/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Scrum Alliance</a> is hosting the inaugural <a href="https://scrsyd.wordpress.com" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Sydney Scrum Coach Retreat</a> from May 5 &#8211; 7 in Coogee. It&#8217;s 2 1/2 days of deep-dive learning combined with many opportunities to extend professional relationships within the community. Sounds like a bargain at just over $500.  <a href="https://www.regonline.com/registration/Checkin.aspx?EventId=1959940" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Register now</a> and I&#8217;ll see you there.</p>
  381. <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="http://www.ethann.com/scrum-coach-retreat/">Inaugural Scrum Coach Retreat Sydney</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="http://www.ethann.com">Ethann Castell</a>.</p>
  382. ]]></content:encoded>
  383. <wfw:commentRss>http://www.ethann.com/scrum-coach-retreat/feed/</wfw:commentRss>
  384. <slash:comments>0</slash:comments>
  385. <post-id xmlns="com-wordpress:feed-additions:1">565</post-id> </item>
  386. <item>
  387. <title>Agile Team Energiser: Rock,Paper,Scissors,Lizard,Spock</title>
  388. <link>http://www.ethann.com/agile-team-energizer-rock-paper-scissors-lizard-spock/</link>
  389. <comments>http://www.ethann.com/agile-team-energizer-rock-paper-scissors-lizard-spock/#respond</comments>
  390. <pubDate>Thu, 02 Mar 2017 05:35:42 +0000</pubDate>
  391. <dc:creator><![CDATA[Ethann Castell]]></dc:creator>
  392. <category><![CDATA[Agile]]></category>
  393. <category><![CDATA[Energisers]]></category>
  394. <category><![CDATA[daily standups]]></category>
  395. <category><![CDATA[energisers]]></category>
  396. <category><![CDATA[games]]></category>
  397. <category><![CDATA[team building]]></category>
  398.  
  399. <guid isPermaLink="false">http://www.ethann.com/?p=561</guid>
  400. <description><![CDATA[<p>Most people are familiar with the game Rock, Paper, Scissors &#8211; a simple game where two participants compete with hand gestures representing each of the aforementioned objects, and a simple set of rules for determining which object beats the other. Recently I came across an extended version of the game called Rock,Paper,Scissors,Lizard,Spock which appears to have first appeared on The Big Bang Theory. As you might expect, this version of the game introduces two additional hand gestures; Lizard and Spock. The game also has a more complex set of rules governing which object beat others. I&#8217;ve added this game as an energiser to the end of some of my daily team standups with great success. It&#8217;s quick, gets everyone involved and teams really seem to love it. There are different ways to play this game but the best way I&#8217;ve found is to get the team members to pair up and compete in a best of three competition.  The winners then go through to the next round and compete against the other winners.  With a team of eight you&#8217;ll only need to play three rounds, which you should be able to complete easily within three minutes. At the end you can crown the victorious winner for the day. So there you have it. A quick, fun game to get the team motivated in the morning.  I&#8217;ve made this a regular energiser for one of my teams and play it at at least one standup a fortnight.  Have fun trying it out with your teams! &#160;</p>
  401. <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="http://www.ethann.com/agile-team-energizer-rock-paper-scissors-lizard-spock/">Agile Team Energiser: Rock,Paper,Scissors,Lizard,Spock</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="http://www.ethann.com">Ethann Castell</a>.</p>
  402. ]]></description>
  403. <content:encoded><![CDATA[<p>Most people are familiar with the game <a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rock%E2%80%93paper%E2%80%93scissors" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Rock, Paper, Scissors</a> &#8211; a simple game where two participants compete with hand gestures representing each of the aforementioned objects, and a simple set of rules for determining which object <em>beats</em> the other.</p>
  404. <p>Recently I came across an extended version of the game called <a href="http://bigbangtheory.wikia.com/wiki/Rock_Paper_Scissors_Lizard_Spock" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Rock,Paper,Scissors,Lizard,Spock</a> which appears to have first appeared on <a href="http://the-big-bang-theory.com/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">The Big Bang Theory</a>. As you might expect, this version of the game introduces two additional hand gestures; Lizard and Spock. The game also has a more complex set of rules governing which object <em>beat</em> others.</p>
  405. <p>I&#8217;ve added this game as an energiser to the end of some of my daily team standups with great success. It&#8217;s quick, gets everyone involved and teams really seem to love it.</p>
  406. <p>There are different ways to play this game but the best way I&#8217;ve found is to get the team members to pair up and compete in a best of three competition.  The winners then go through to the next round and compete against the other winners.  With a team of eight you&#8217;ll only need to play three rounds, which you should be able to complete easily within three minutes. At the end you can crown the victorious winner for the day.</p>
  407. <p>So there you have it. A quick, fun game to get the team motivated in the morning.  I&#8217;ve made this a regular energiser for one of my teams and play it at at least one standup a fortnight.  Have fun trying it out with your teams!</p>
  408. <p>&nbsp;</p>
  409. <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="http://www.ethann.com/agile-team-energizer-rock-paper-scissors-lizard-spock/">Agile Team Energiser: Rock,Paper,Scissors,Lizard,Spock</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="http://www.ethann.com">Ethann Castell</a>.</p>
  410. ]]></content:encoded>
  411. <wfw:commentRss>http://www.ethann.com/agile-team-energizer-rock-paper-scissors-lizard-spock/feed/</wfw:commentRss>
  412. <slash:comments>0</slash:comments>
  413. <post-id xmlns="com-wordpress:feed-additions:1">561</post-id> </item>
  414. <item>
  415. <title>Using graffiti to build high-performing teams.</title>
  416. <link>http://www.ethann.com/using-graffiti-to-build-your-team/</link>
  417. <comments>http://www.ethann.com/using-graffiti-to-build-your-team/#respond</comments>
  418. <pubDate>Mon, 27 Feb 2017 08:11:14 +0000</pubDate>
  419. <dc:creator><![CDATA[Ethann Castell]]></dc:creator>
  420. <category><![CDATA[Agile]]></category>
  421.  
  422. <guid isPermaLink="false">http://www.ethann.com/?p=299</guid>
  423. <description><![CDATA[<p>There&#8217;s one thing that strikes me about close-knit, high-performing teams. They seem to have an internal language that people outside of the group have trouble understanding. So how can the use of grafitti encourage the development of this internal language? Well-known author Steve McConnell wrote about this in his book Rapid Development:Taming Wild Software Schedules. Like a lot of other teams, we had a set of in-jokes and rituals that people outside the team had a hard time understanding. I&#8217;ve written previously about the importance of a shared common language. The language I&#8217;m referring to here is different.  It&#8217;s not so much about the language used to communicate about the project domain,  but more about language the team used internally for in-jokes and the like. I&#8217;m going to share with you a technique I&#8217;ve used for creating and enhancing this internal language &#8211; the Graffiti Wall. &#160; The Grafitti Board The Grafitti Wall is a white board (or a cordoned-off section of a whiteboard) placed centrally within the team&#8217;s working area. The team uses this board to visually create their own space. &#160; What goes on the board? Things which appear on the board are generally related to the company, project, team or individual team members. Typically these will be things that are funny, stupid, annoying or just plain quirky. With one team we used to record any funny sayings that were mentioned during meetings. One person often talked about &#8220;Having all their ducks lined up&#8221;, so that saying went went up on the Graffiti Wall. One day..</p>
  424. <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="http://www.ethann.com/using-graffiti-to-build-your-team/">Using graffiti to build high-performing teams.</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="http://www.ethann.com">Ethann Castell</a>.</p>
  425. ]]></description>
  426. <content:encoded><![CDATA[<p>There&#8217;s one thing that strikes me about close-knit, high-performing teams. They seem to have an internal language that people outside of the group have trouble understanding. So how can the use of grafitti encourage the development of this internal language?</p>
  427. <p><span id="more-299"></span></p>
  428. <p>Well-known author Steve McConnell wrote about this in his book <a href="http://www.amazon.com/Rapid-Development-Taming-Software-Schedules/dp/1556159005" target="_blank">Rapid Development:Taming Wild Software Schedules</a>.</p>
  429. <blockquote><p>Like a lot of other teams, we had a set of in-jokes and rituals that people outside the team had a hard time understanding.</p></blockquote>
  430. <p>I&#8217;ve written previously about the<a href="http://www.ethann.com/the-value-of-a-shared-common-language/" target="_blank"> importance of a shared common language</a>. The language I&#8217;m referring to here is different.  It&#8217;s not so much about the language used to communicate about the project domain,  but more about language the team used internally for in-jokes and the like. I&#8217;m going to share with you a technique I&#8217;ve used for creating and enhancing this internal language &#8211; the Graffiti Wall.</p>
  431. <p>&nbsp;</p>
  432. <h2>The Grafitti Board</h2>
  433. <p>The Grafitti Wall is a white board (or a cordoned-off section of a whiteboard) placed centrally within the team&#8217;s working area. The team uses this board to visually create their own space.</p>
  434. <p>&nbsp;</p>
  435. <h2>What goes on the board?</h2>
  436. <p>Things which appear on the board are generally related to the company, project, team or individual team members. Typically these will be things that are funny, stupid, annoying or just plain quirky.</p>
  437. <p>With one team we used to record any funny sayings that were mentioned during meetings. One person often talked about &#8220;Having all their ducks lined up&#8221;, so that saying went went up on the Graffiti Wall. One day in a meeting someone said that &#8220;Ideas are like concrete&#8221; which no-one, including the person who said it, knew what it meant. So that went up on the wall.  You probably get the idea by now.</p>
  438. <p>I&#8217;ve also seen teams write inspirational quotes or draw caricatures. Other teams have posted a question and then have other team members write or draw replies to that question.</p>
  439. <p>Let your imagination run free because there&#8217;s no limit to how creative you can get with these Graffiti Walls.</p>
  440. <p><a href="https://i2.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/02/ducks-lined-up-1.jpeg"><img data-attachment-id="534" data-permalink="http://www.ethann.com/using-graffiti-to-build-your-team/ducks-lined-up-2/" data-orig-file="https://i2.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/02/ducks-lined-up-1.jpeg" data-orig-size="" data-comments-opened="1" data-image-meta="[]" data-image-title="Ducks Lined Up" data-image-description="" data-medium-file="https://i2.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/02/ducks-lined-up-1.jpeg?fit=300%2C300" data-large-file="https://i2.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/02/ducks-lined-up-1.jpeg?fit=1024%2C1024" class="aligncenter size-full wp-image-534" src="https://i2.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/02/ducks-lined-up-1.jpeg" alt="" data-recalc-dims="1" /></a></p>
  441. <h2>Some usage guidelines</h2>
  442. <p>Here are some guidelines that I&#8217;ve found helpful for running Graffiti Walls:</p>
  443. <ul>
  444. <li>Nothing discriminatory goes on the wall &#8211; nothing sexist, racist etc.</li>
  445. <li>Everything on the wall must comply with organisational rules and policies.</li>
  446. <li>Any team member can write on the wall.</li>
  447. <li>A team member can remove anything from the wall that has been written about them.</li>
  448. </ul>
  449. <h2>Have Fun</h2>
  450. <p>Have fun with your Graffiti Wall and please let me know how your teams use it.</p>
  451. <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="http://www.ethann.com/using-graffiti-to-build-your-team/">Using graffiti to build high-performing teams.</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="http://www.ethann.com">Ethann Castell</a>.</p>
  452. ]]></content:encoded>
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  454. <slash:comments>0</slash:comments>
  455. <post-id xmlns="com-wordpress:feed-additions:1">299</post-id> </item>
  456. <item>
  457. <title>Four free Agile resources that you should know about (but probably don&#8217;t!)</title>
  458. <link>http://www.ethann.com/four-free-agile-resources-know-probably-dont/</link>
  459. <comments>http://www.ethann.com/four-free-agile-resources-know-probably-dont/#comments</comments>
  460. <pubDate>Mon, 17 Oct 2016 22:52:49 +0000</pubDate>
  461. <dc:creator><![CDATA[Ethann Castell]]></dc:creator>
  462. <category><![CDATA[Agile]]></category>
  463. <category><![CDATA[scrum]]></category>
  464.  
  465. <guid isPermaLink="false">http://www.ethann.com/?p=479</guid>
  466. <description><![CDATA[<p>There are lots of free Agile resources on the internet. However not all information is created equal. Frankly a lot of the stuff out there is just click-bait designed to get you to buy a product or service. But there are good sources lots of good information out there. I&#8217;m going to assume that you&#8217;ve read the Agile Manifesto and The Scrum Guide, and that you are familiar with sites such as The Scrum Alliance, Scrum.org and Mountain Goat Software. Today I&#8217;m going to share with you four lesser-known Agile resources. These sites offer a lot of value and most of their content is free. Enjoy! 1. Embracing Agile In May 2016, Harvard Business Review (HBR) published the article titled Embracing Agile. Why should just one article be so important? Because according to Forbes columnist, and former director of the Scrum Alliance, Steve Denning, this is the first time that HBR has acknowledged that Agile is something significant for management generally. Two heavy-hitters of the Agile world wrote this article; Jeff Sutherland and Hirotaka Takeuchi . Jeff Sutherland is the co-creator of Scrum. Hirotaka Takeuchi is a professor at Harvard Business School and co-author of the landmark paper The New New Product Development Game. And now that HBR has given Agile its&#8217; tick of approval, Agile is beginning to be seen as something more than than just some weird IT practice. This might be the article to print and leave on your manager&#8217;s desk! 2. The Agile Revolution Podcast My favourite Agile podcast is The Agile Revolution. A lot of podcasts in general seem to be ego-fests for their presenter(s). But this one is different and..</p>
  467. <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="http://www.ethann.com/four-free-agile-resources-know-probably-dont/">Four free Agile resources that you should know about (but probably don&#8217;t!)</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="http://www.ethann.com">Ethann Castell</a>.</p>
  468. ]]></description>
  469. <content:encoded><![CDATA[<p>There are lots of free Agile resources on the internet. However not all information is created equal. Frankly a lot of the stuff out there is just click-bait designed to get you to buy a product or service. But there are good sources lots of good information out there.</p>
  470. <p>I&#8217;m going to assume that you&#8217;ve read the <a href="http://agilemanifesto.org/" target="_blank">Agile Manifesto</a> and <a href="http://www.scrumguides.org/" target="_blank">The Scrum Guide</a>, and that you are familiar with sites such as <a href="https://www.scrumalliance.org/" target="_blank">The Scrum Alliance</a>, <a href="https://www.scrum.org/">Scrum.org</a> and <a href="https://www.mountaingoatsoftware.com/" target="_blank">Mountain Goat Software</a>. Today I&#8217;m going to share with you four lesser-known Agile resources. These sites offer a lot of value and most of their content is free. Enjoy!</p>
  471. <h2>1. Embracing Agile</h2>
  472. <p><a href="https://hbr.org/2016/05/embracing-agile" target="_blank"><img data-attachment-id="483" data-permalink="http://www.ethann.com/four-free-agile-resources-know-probably-dont/embracing-agile/" data-orig-file="https://i0.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/embracing-agile.jpg?fit=475%2C224" data-orig-size="475,224" data-comments-opened="1" data-image-meta="{&quot;aperture&quot;:&quot;0&quot;,&quot;credit&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;camera&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;caption&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;created_timestamp&quot;:&quot;0&quot;,&quot;copyright&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;focal_length&quot;:&quot;0&quot;,&quot;iso&quot;:&quot;0&quot;,&quot;shutter_speed&quot;:&quot;0&quot;,&quot;title&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;orientation&quot;:&quot;1&quot;}" data-image-title="embracing-agile" data-image-description="" data-medium-file="https://i0.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/embracing-agile.jpg?fit=300%2C141" data-large-file="https://i0.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/embracing-agile.jpg?fit=475%2C224" class="aligncenter wp-image-483 size-full" src="https://i0.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/embracing-agile.jpg?resize=475%2C224" alt="embracing-agile" width="475" height="224" srcset="https://i0.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/embracing-agile.jpg?w=475 475w, https://i0.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/embracing-agile.jpg?resize=300%2C141 300w, https://i0.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/embracing-agile.jpg?resize=400%2C189 400w" sizes="(max-width: 475px) 100vw, 475px" data-recalc-dims="1" /></a></p>
  473. <p>In May 2016, <a href="https://hbr.org" target="_blank">Harvard Business Review</a> (HBR) published the article titled <a href="https://hbr.org/2016/05/embracing-agile" target="_blank">Embracing Agile</a>. Why should just one article be so important? Because according to <a href="http://www.forbes.com/sites/stevedenning/#58b3f8ea63f7" target="_blank">Forbes columnist</a>, and former director of the Scrum Alliance, <a href="http://www.stevedenning.com/site/Default.aspx" target="_blank">Steve Denning</a>, this is the first time that HBR has acknowledged that Agile is something significant for management generally.</p>
  474. <p>Two heavy-hitters of the Agile world wrote this article; <a href="http://www.hbs.edu/faculty/Pages/profile.aspx?facId=6563" target="_blank">Jeff Sutherland</a> and <a href="http://www.hbs.edu/faculty/Pages/profile.aspx?facId=6563" target="_blank">Hirotaka Takeuchi</a> . Jeff Sutherland is the co-creator of Scrum. <a href="http://www.hbs.edu/faculty/Pages/profile.aspx?facId=6563" target="_blank">Hirotaka Takeuchi</a> is a professor at Harvard Business School and co-author of the landmark paper <a href="https://hbr.org/1986/01/the-new-new-product-development-game" target="_blank">The New New Product Development Game</a>. And now that HBR has given Agile its&#8217; <em>tick of approval</em>, Agile is beginning to be seen as something more than than just some weird IT practice. This might be the article to print and leave on your manager&#8217;s desk!</p>
  475. <h2>2. The Agile Revolution Podcast</h2>
  476. <p><a href="https://theagilerevolution.com/" target="_blank"><img data-attachment-id="480" data-permalink="http://www.ethann.com/four-free-agile-resources-know-probably-dont/the-agile-revolution/" data-orig-file="https://i0.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/the-agile-revolution.jpg?fit=195%2C274" data-orig-size="195,274" data-comments-opened="1" data-image-meta="{&quot;aperture&quot;:&quot;0&quot;,&quot;credit&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;camera&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;caption&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;created_timestamp&quot;:&quot;0&quot;,&quot;copyright&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;focal_length&quot;:&quot;0&quot;,&quot;iso&quot;:&quot;0&quot;,&quot;shutter_speed&quot;:&quot;0&quot;,&quot;title&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;orientation&quot;:&quot;0&quot;}" data-image-title="the-agile-revolution" data-image-description="" data-medium-file="https://i0.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/the-agile-revolution.jpg?fit=195%2C274" data-large-file="https://i0.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/the-agile-revolution.jpg?fit=195%2C274" class="aligncenter wp-image-480 size-full" src="https://i0.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/the-agile-revolution.jpg?resize=195%2C274" alt="the-agile-revolution" width="195" height="274" data-recalc-dims="1" /></a></p>
  477. <p>My favourite Agile podcast is <a href="https://theagilerevolution.com/" target="_blank">The Agile Revolution</a>. A lot of podcasts in general seem to be ego-fests for their presenter(s). But this one is different and has some really great interviews.  If you want to get a taste of the quality then I highly recommend starting with <a href="https://theagilerevolution.com/2016/01/15/episode-101-the-lean-mindset-with-mary-and-tom-poppendieck/" target="_blank">Episode 101: The Lean Mindset with Mary and Tom Poppendieck</a>. <a href="http://www.poppendieck.com/" target="_blank">Tom and Mary Poppendieck</a> wrote the widely acclaimed book <a href="https://www.amazon.com/Lean-Software-Development-Agile-Toolkit/dp/0321150783" target="_blank">Lean Software Development: An Agile Toolkit</a> in 2003 and have been instrumental in the Lean Software movement. It&#8217;s a great listen.</p>
  478. <h2>3. The Agile Coach</h2>
  479. <p><a href="https://www.atlassian.com/agile" target="_blank"><img data-attachment-id="484" data-permalink="http://www.ethann.com/four-free-agile-resources-know-probably-dont/atlassian-the-agile-coach/" data-orig-file="https://i2.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/atlassian-the-agile-coach.png?fit=745%2C256" data-orig-size="745,256" data-comments-opened="1" data-image-meta="{&quot;aperture&quot;:&quot;0&quot;,&quot;credit&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;camera&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;caption&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;created_timestamp&quot;:&quot;0&quot;,&quot;copyright&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;focal_length&quot;:&quot;0&quot;,&quot;iso&quot;:&quot;0&quot;,&quot;shutter_speed&quot;:&quot;0&quot;,&quot;title&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;orientation&quot;:&quot;0&quot;}" data-image-title="atlassian-the-agile-coach" data-image-description="" data-medium-file="https://i2.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/atlassian-the-agile-coach.png?fit=300%2C103" data-large-file="https://i2.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/atlassian-the-agile-coach.png?fit=745%2C256" class="aligncenter wp-image-484 size-full" src="https://i2.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/atlassian-the-agile-coach.png?resize=745%2C256" alt="atlassian-the-agile-coach" width="745" height="256" srcset="https://i2.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/atlassian-the-agile-coach.png?w=745 745w, https://i2.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/atlassian-the-agile-coach.png?resize=300%2C103 300w, https://i2.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/atlassian-the-agile-coach.png?resize=400%2C137 400w" sizes="(max-width: 745px) 100vw, 745px" data-recalc-dims="1" /></a></p>
  480. <p><a href="https://www.atlassian.com" target="_blank">Atlassian</a> are well-known as the makers of cool software including <a href="https://www.atlassian.com/software/jira" target="_blank">JIRA</a>.  However it&#8217;s lesser-known that they also have a section on their website called <a href="https://www.atlassian.com/agile" target="_blank">The Agile Coach</a>, which is packed full of great articles. These articles are particularly good if you are new-ish to Agile.  Sure, they eventually want you to buy their software. But the thing that sets The Agile Coach apart is the quality and usefulness of the articles. Check out <a href="https://www.atlassian.com/agile/program" target="_blank">Running Agile Programs</a> for a taste of what&#8217;s on offer. Highly recommended.</p>
  481. <h2>4. ProjectManagement.com</h2>
  482. <p><a href="http://www.projectmanagement.com/Practices/Agile/" target="_blank"><img data-attachment-id="490" data-permalink="http://www.ethann.com/four-free-agile-resources-know-probably-dont/project-management/" data-orig-file="https://i2.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/project-management.png?fit=234%2C84" data-orig-size="234,84" data-comments-opened="1" data-image-meta="{&quot;aperture&quot;:&quot;0&quot;,&quot;credit&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;camera&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;caption&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;created_timestamp&quot;:&quot;0&quot;,&quot;copyright&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;focal_length&quot;:&quot;0&quot;,&quot;iso&quot;:&quot;0&quot;,&quot;shutter_speed&quot;:&quot;0&quot;,&quot;title&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;orientation&quot;:&quot;0&quot;}" data-image-title="project-management" data-image-description="" data-medium-file="https://i2.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/project-management.png?fit=234%2C84" data-large-file="https://i2.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/project-management.png?fit=234%2C84" class="aligncenter wp-image-490 size-full" src="https://i2.wp.com/www.ethann.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/project-management.png?resize=234%2C84" alt="project-management" width="234" height="84" data-recalc-dims="1" /></a></p>
  483. <p>Management.com is a website owned by the Project Management Institute (PMI). The PMI (of PMBOK fame) has long been associated with traditional Project Management methodologies. However their <a href="http://www.projectmanagement.com/Practices/Agile/" target="_blank">Agile sub-site</a> contains a surprising amount of quality Agile articles, webinars and discussions.   Some of the resources are paid resources but there&#8217;s also lots of good free stuff there.</p>
  484. <p>Site registration (free) is required to access most of the content.</p>
  485. <p>&nbsp;</p>
  486. <p>&nbsp;</p>
  487. <p>&nbsp;</p>
  488. <p>&nbsp;</p>
  489. <p>&nbsp;</p>
  490. <p>&nbsp;</p>
  491. <p>&nbsp;</p>
  492. <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="http://www.ethann.com/four-free-agile-resources-know-probably-dont/">Four free Agile resources that you should know about (but probably don&#8217;t!)</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="http://www.ethann.com">Ethann Castell</a>.</p>
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